ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Teach Proper Airplane Etiquette to Children

Updated on August 30, 2016

Children are Children

I watched as the plane boarded, I was counting the littlest passengers. We were going to Orlando and my boyfriend (at the time) did not deal well with noisy children on planes. We had to go to Orlando, and there was no alternative. We were next to children, all going to Disney.

A woman sat across from us with her two children, both dressed in t-shirts and shorts. The little boy looked over and began telling us about the vacation that they were going on. My boyfriend stood up and made me move from the window seat to the aisle so that he would not be bothered.

As the flight took off, the chipper kids began to cry and whine for their mother. They were scared of the noises from the plane. I motioned her and she looked at me with disbelief. She then told me that her children were going to have to learn patience and she was reading a very interesting novel!

When traveling with children, one thing that we must all be mindful of is that children, no matter how mature they may seem, are still children.


Preparing Your Child For Travel

Each age group will have different levels of comprehension. My nieces were very young when we took our first trip, and I prepared for it well in advance. Here are some topics that we covered:

  • What we need to pack for our trip
  • What we will do at the airport. I started with parking the car and remembering where we were parked and went through airport security, the airport and things we can do there
  • How we will board the plane
  • Why we take as little as possible onto the plane
  • How to go to the bathroom on the plane
  • What happens if you get lost at the airport and different places that we will be going
  • How we treat other passengers and the people working on the plane


Explaining Correct Behavior

With my nieces, I explained that when we are traveling, it is the same as if we all are on a school bus. If one person misbehaves on the bus, everyone else has to deal with them and hear them being bad.

I explained what ears that hurt can feel like, what foods are offered on the plane, and why we will be bringing our own trash bags to clean up any messes that we make.

I also explained that the seat we get is the seat that we get. There can be no switching seats unless we are told to switch by the people on the plane.

We practiced a lot of please and thank you words, and we also practiced the art of speaking loudly without shouting since planes are loud and it is hard to hear.


Watching Videos Before You Fly

There are loads of wonderful videos online that address the entire flight process. Take the time to preview the video and then share them with your child/ren. Knowing what will happen when you are on the plane can allay the fears of children and adults.

Knowing where you will be sitting on the plane before you go is another helpful tip. Children love to be informed and they are generally calmer if they know what to expect. If a child is old enough, you can get them to help you find your seats.

I made a game of getting out of the aisle for my nieces. Not only were they praised for getting out of the aisle and stopping the flow of traffic, but fastening their seat belts and stowing their items in the space on the floor in front of their seat.

Realize that for take off, all passengers need to have all of their personal items stowed. Stowed does not mean placed in your hand or under your leg, but instead stowed means securely put away.

Many of the major carriers now have boarding videos. You can view these online, too.


Bring Mess Free Entertainment For Children

I like bringing things for children to play with, read or look at.

I bring one item for each hour of airplane flight time plus two items additional in case we are delayed. In the time that we are at the airplane terminal, age appropriate games can be played without taking things out. Here are some suggestions:

For toddlers and babies who cannot count or read yet, play "I spy" but make it very easy.

Things to "spy"


Flight Attendants









For the older child that can recognize colors and some letters, add on the following:

Shoes by color

Clothes by color

Certain letters on the cover of books and magazines

How many suitcases can you count in one minute

How many hats can you count in one minute

How many minutes until our flight

What color is our plane

Who has the tickets

Go to the bathroom, use bathroom and wash hands and face

For the older child than that, a book or personal electronic device can be awesome, but find a plug to use while in the airport. They are everywhere. I always pack a small extension cord with many outlets so that all of the kids can charge while only using one plug, and I make sure that we gather everything when we go to board the plane.

If there is another traveler who wants to use an open outlet on our plug, I always say yes and tell them that when we unplug, I will happily plug their device directly in.

If the flight is delayed, explain this to your child/ren and let them know that when delays happen, we stay calm, cool and collected.


Submit a Comment

No comments yet.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)